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Pokémon Go’s big AR update lets you get way closer to wild Pokémon

A new way to play on iOS

charizard ar kit feature in pokémon go Niantic/The Pokémon Company

Pokémon Go’s augmented reality feature set is about to expand. Niantic announced that an update will soon allow the game to make use of Apple’s ARKit technology for devices with iOS 11, which the company says should create a more “dynamic gameplay” experience.

The AR+ functionality, once activated, will give iPhone and iPad users the chance to interact more directly with wild Pokémon. Should a trainer move closer or further away to the monster on the screen, for example, it will respond accordingly. Pokémon could even run away depending on whether the trainer is closing too far in on it.

There are also new bonuses to incentivize using AR+. The Expert Handler capture bonus will grant additional experience points and is unlocked when a trainer manages to get close enough to a Pokémon to capture it without scaring it away first.

AR+ makes particular usage of Apple’s augmented reality software, so only players on Apple devices will be able to check out the update once it’s live. The enhanced AR experience has been in the works for several months now; Niantic joined Apple execs on stage during June’s Worldwide Developers Conference, when the company first previewed Pokémon Go’s ARKit-enabled functionalities.

The AR+ feature will roll out to players soon, so keep an eye out for the update.

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